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Rio Ferdinand reveals the two forwards he hated playing against in his career

1.90K   //    01 Feb 2019, 14:37 IST

Manchester United v Wigan Athletic
Manchester United v Wigan Athletic

What's the story?

Former Manchester United and England centre-back Rio Ferdinand has revealed the names of two legendary strikers he hated playing against in the course of his illustrious career.

In case you didn't know...

During his trophy-laden stint at Old Trafford, the defender won six Premier League titles, a Champions League crown and two League Cups. His last trophy came in 2013, when the Red Devils won the Premier League title under Sir Alex Ferguson.

In 2017, the 40-year-old pundit had picked Barcelona ace Lionel Messi and Brazilian legend Ronaldo as the toughest forwards to play against, but his opinion has somewhat changed recently.

The heart of the matter

When Ferdinand was asked which players he hated playing against domestically and in Europe in a Twitter Q&A, he stated that while former Chesterfield and Southampton star Kevin Davies was a difficult opponent in the Premier League, Barcelona star Lionel Messi was the worst player to face in Europe.

The defender tweeted, "Premier League Striker is Kevin Davies... Europe is Messi". 

The former United centre-back went head-to-head against Messi in two Champions League finals (2009 and 2011). The five-time Ballon d'Or winner found the net in both the games, helping Barcelona defeat United both times.

It's no surprise that Ferdinand brought up Messi, considering the fact that he once stated that the only way to stop the Argentine was by inflicting bodily harm.

Speaking on BT Sport, he said, "I was in a team that tried it a couple of times and it didn't come off," he said on BT Sport.


"Other than GBH [Grievous Bodily Harm], I don't know. He's one of, if not the best player in the world. Ever.

"There's no individual that can deal with him. It's a team effort."

What's next?

While Davies has retired after playing his last two seasons at Preston North End, Messi continues his exploits in Barcelona.

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